In the dark of the night, two hooded Auror's made their way across the Hogwarts ground and inside. Professor McGonagall politely greets the Auror's and leads them inside to the corridor with an ugly gargoyle. "Follow me if you will," Professor McGonagall said as the wall split open to reveal a spiral moving staircase. The two Auror's follow closely as the stars rise higher and higher before coming to a still before a gleam oak door with a brass knocker.
Professor McGonagall firmly knocks on the door as the voice of Dumbledore says, "Please send them in, Minerva." Professor McGonagall moves to the side as the two Auror's step inside as she closes the door behind them.
Looking up from his desk from behind half-moon spectacles, Dumbledore asks, "To what do I owe the pleasure for the unexpected visit, Auror's?"
"It's been some time, Headmaster," Alastor Moody said with a grin as he removed his hood. A rather recent new scar can be seen across the bridge of his nose no doubt from a recent escapee.
"I am well, and you?" Dumbledore replied as the second Auror removed their hood to reveal the sharp face of Sara Vinovich. Her gleaming yellow owl-like eyes seem to take everything in as she studies the Headmaster's office.
"Well enough," Moody replied as he took a seat, while Vinovich intently remained standing.
Dumbledore nods and says, "I fear this is not a social visit, am I correct?"
"Alas no," Moody regretfully murmured. "I'm afraid, we're here to discuss a more somber topic."
"Yes, well, I'm all ears," Dumbledore said as he clasped his hands tighter to rest on his desk.
"I received your letter, Headmaster," Moody carefully said. "But there was still something that left an itch in me."
"Was there something I did not go into detail or answer?"
"Well, honestly, yes, Headmaster. Why did you say that after the death of a student back during his term as Head Boy you kept a close eye on him afterward?"
Vinovich's eyes narrow on Dumbledore as he grows a bit stiff and still. "You must understand, I never wished to think terribly of a student," Dumbledore said. "And there was never any proof for he was a well-liked boy by all including previous Headmaster Dippet. Yet I felt that a closer eye could never do harm."
"Don't play coy, Dumbledore," Vinovich snapped.
"Vinovich!" Moody exclaimed. "I am so sorry for this, Headmaster, but she's always had a bit of a temper.
"I'm by no means offended, please do carry on," Dumbledore calmly replied as he leaned back into his seat.
Vinovich narrows her eyes and coldly says, "I remember Grindelwald, Dumbledore, for my father was one of the men who died in the pursuit. I very clearly recall the part you played as well as you remained holed up in your castle-like some sort of muggle princess in her tower.
I even know how you used Newt Scamander when you were too afraid to act yourself. And yet, no one speaks of the valor of Newt Scamander or all those Auror's who lost their lives in the apprehension of Grindelwald. All they wizarding world recalls is the grand defeat of Grindelwald, but what most fail to recall is that you, Dumbledore had to actually be begged by most of the wizarding world to actually intervene. The obvious and most logical question that no one ever seems to ask is why did you not do so sooner?"
"Vinovich," Moody growled knowing her emotions were getting to her.
Vinovich snorts, "I am not saying anything that is untrue, Moody!" Moody opens his mouth but is unable to think of anything to refute her claim.
"I know a bit more than most, Moody!" Vinovich hissed. "But I digress on the topic given that this is neither the place nor time for it. Nevertheless, we both know that you must have sensed or even seen the signs, Dumbledore. After all, who better than the childhood friend of Grindelwald to notice the signs of another dark wizard."
Moody clearly blinks in shock at the revilement. "Is that true, Headmaster?" Moody gawked. "Were you once friends with Grindelwald?"
"In our youth," Dumbledore quietly answered causing Moody to snap his mouth shut in shock.
"I will ask you once more, Dumbledore," Vinovich spat. "Did you or did you not see the warning signs, Albus Dumbledore?"
"I may have noticed one or two similar traits," Dumbledore reluctantly admitted.
Vinovich coldly laughed. "Of course, what else was to be expected? As usual, the heroic Dumbledore waits in his castle to act until the last minute, when all hope is lost. How very typical of you, Dumbledore, always being the hero until the very end."
Dumbledore remains silent as Moody coughs and says, "Vinovich perhaps, it would be best if you remain outside for the rest of the conversation."
"No, I'll hold my tongue, Moody," Vinovich growled. "But don't even think for a second, I will ever like this man."
"Fair enough," Moody mumbled before clearing his throat and saying, "I apologize for the divergence, Headmaster. But as I was saying, in my letter, is there anything else that you can think of that could be of importance?"
"None that the moment," Dumbledore truthfully replied as Vinovich loudly snorted.
Casting a glare in her direction, Moody quickly says, "In that case, we'll be taking out leave, Headmaster. Good Night."
Moody and Vinovich turn to leave, when Dumbledore says, "How did you come to learn of Tom Riddle's past. Surely, he wasn't on the Ministry's agenda until recently, but you seem to know far too much about him, Auror Moody."
Moody narrows his eyes and turns around with a polite smile. "It is my job to know, Headmaster, it is my case."
Dumbledore sagely nods his head and says, "I see." Moody nods once more to Dumbledore, before leaving the way they came.
The two of them are silent until they make their way out onto the ground. "I told you so," Vinovich finally said.
"About what?" Moody said rather startled.
"What about him?"
"Don't use that mocking tone with me, Moody! You heard that last question direction directed at you. Why would such a benevolent Headmaster even think to ask such a question?"
After a long silence, Moody reluctantly replies, "I don't know."
"That is why I don't like him," Vinovich growled. "He claims to do things for the greater good even if it means the sacrifice of others. Now, whose philosophy does that sound like?"
Moody remains silent as they both know the obvious answer, Grindelwald. Their return back is long and quiet as Moody changes his perspective of Headmaster Dumbledore. That wasn't to say, that he believed that Dumbledore had been turned or was in league with Tom Riddle. It was just that perhaps, there was some truth to Vinovich after all. Headmaster Dumbledore played games with the people's lives and whether for the greater good or not, he himself most certainly did not agree with that view.